This guy has really stepped up Dan Leberfeld

Jets reserve offensive tackle Ben Ijalana has improved a great deal over the last year, and is the leading candidate to land the back-up swing-tackle job.

Ijalana, a second-round pick of Indianapolis in 2011, had some knee and hip issues his first couple of years in the league, and the Colts waived him on the final cut-down last summer. The Jets claimed him, and essentially red-shirted him last year, so he could get healthy, and improve his technique.

Ijalana had a very good summer. The Villanova-product has a terrific kick slide that allows him to deal with speed rushers coming off the edge.

Since Oday Aboushi, who was considered a swing-tackle candidate in the past, is a better fit at guard, Ijalana is now the leading candidate for the job.